Monday, April 6, 2009

Living History

Yesterday, I decided to take Peanut to the bluebonnet patch near my office. I see the patches of bluebonnets in the field across from my office every evening when I leave work. They are so beautiful and I really wanted to take her picture with them. Bluebonnets are a Texas tradition in the Spring. You can read more about that here.

I knew the bluebonnets were on private property and I didn't want to intrude without getting the permission of the owners. I drove down the long driveway yesterday and knocked on the door of the house at the end. It was a beautiful home and a lovely property. An older gentleman answered the door and introduced himself as Mr. Smith. I asked if I could take my dog's picture in his yard full of bluebonnets. He was SO sweet and said that of course I could and he even offered to take my picture with Peanut, which I was happy to have him do.

Afterward, he sat on the porch and we talked. It turns out he's 84 years old and a World War II veteran. He flew planes in the war as part of the Air Force. He was very sharp and we talked about history, which was a favorite subject of his. and mine. I asked him questions about living through the depression in the 1930s and he told me what that was like. It was fascinating! He is the youngest of six boys and he had six children himself. His wife came out and joined us and she was just as sweet and smart as he was. I'm a person who loves to listen to people's stories and I always ask questions so this was a real treat for me.

These two were full of interesting stories and facts. It turns out that they built the home I was sitting in front of by themselves! They hired some subcontractors to help, but essentially they did a majority of the work themselves along with their children. Mr. Smith acted as his own electrician and his children learned a lot helping to build the house. It was a real family project.

I absolutely adored the time I spent with this couple and Peanut did as well. They let her run all over their property, which she loved, and they gave her a lot of attention, which she was hugely excited about. Peanut is much like me in that she loves people and is very friendly with everyone. I finally had to leave, but the two hours I spent with the Smiths was wonderful. I asked if I could come back and see them and they said absolutely, they'd love it. They said they love young people and are happy to have visitors.

It was a wonderful day for Peanut and me and I feel so fortunate to have met this amazing couple from whom I learned so much in such a short time. I look forward to visiting with them again soon.


Jessatsea said...

Oh my goodness... what a truly wonderful thing you did. Wow... seriously... I am sure that your visit probably meant the world to that couple and for you to sit there and just listen to them. :)

Everyone... every single person... has a story. And you listened. What a blessing that is and what a blessing that you are.

singaporegrrl said...

What a great story and so refreshing in this day and age of email, voicemail and online connections to actually have a face-to-face connection. You just don't get that on facebook!

I bet Peanut had a ball!

Dauphyfan said...

Those are the teachable moments that every soul needs. Taking time to smell the blue bonnetts and listening to the wisdom of those who came before us.

We truly live parallel lives. Just the other day I was chatting with my childcare lady about how to plant some blue bonnetts and daffodils. Ironic.